Mary Jackson, actress: born Milford, Michigan 22 November 1910; married 1937 Griffin Bancroft Jnr (marriage dissolved); died Los Angeles 10 December 2005.
Misses Emily and Mamie Baldwin were the two genteel sisters in the sentimental television saga The Waltons who concocted a bootleg whiskey they called "the Recipe", which they offered to neighbours and passers-by - leaning over to watch for a reaction. They were based on two real women recalled by the father and uncles of Earl Hamner Jnr, whose wholesome children's series about hillfolk in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia during the Depression - following an earlier novel, Spencer's Mountain (1961) - was a fictionalised account of his childhood.
The lovelorn younger sister, Miss Emily, was played by Mary Jackson, who was already in her sixties when she landed the role in The Waltons (1972-81). Helen Kleeb, who died in December 2003, acted Mamie. The eccentric Baldwins, who lived in a mansion left to them by their father, were two of the satellite characters built around the sawmill-owning Walton family, headed by the strong but quiet father, John (Ralph Waite), and hard-working earth-mother, Olivia (Michael Learned), with events seen through the eyes of their eldest son, John Boy (Richard Thomas, later Robert Wightman), an aspiring novelist. Miss Emily carried with her the memory of her long-lost suitor, Ashley Longworth, from whom she had received her first kiss, on her 19th birthday. Later, his son, Ashley junior, arrived on Walton's Mountain, but she never met his father again.
Jackson was once surprised at the effect of television and, especially, The Waltons, which was screened worldwide, when she was asked by a member of the public on a New York bus: "Did Ashley ever come back?" She recalled of Earl Hamner Jnr's popular creation:
Earl gave me two things that I will always cherish and be thankful for: Helen Kleeb as my older sister and the TV series The Waltons - and he gave me Ashley Longworth. I think you ought to know that Ashley has never come back. In case you see him out there, please tell him to return. I have some of the Recipe waiting.
Born in Milford, Michigan, in 1910, Jackson worked as a schoolteacher for a year before studying acting at Western Michigan University, then moving to Chicago, where she began her stage career. After a film début in Friendly Persuasion (1956, the story of a Quaker family in 19th-century Indiana), Jackson's big-screen roles included a nun in Airport (1970) and Jane Fonda's mother in Fun with Dick and Jane (1977). She took character roles in dozens of American television series, including Alfred Hitchcock Presents (1956), My Three Sons (1961), Barnaby Jones (three roles, 1973-77), Hill Street Blues (1987) and L.A. Law (1989).
Although Dorothy Stickney and Josephine Hutchinson played Misses Emily and Mamie Baldwin in the Waltons pilot television film, The Homecoming: A Christmas Story (1971), Jackson and Kleeb took over the roles for the series and reprised them in the sequels A Wedding on Walton's Mountain (1982), A Day for Thanks on Walton's Mountain (1982), A Walton Thanksgiving Reunion (1993), A Walton Wedding (1995) and A Walton Easter (1997).
Anthony Hayward (taken from The Independent.co.uk)
Last Edit: Feb 11, 2014 5:08:10 GMT -5 by Deleted - Back to Top
Post by Steve James on Sept 1, 2013 22:25:34 GMT -5
Despite the fact that I wanted to sometimes holler 'Shut UP, already!!' at her persistent ramblings over Ashley Longworth Jr. (papa sent him away, don't you know)...it's hard not to just adore Miss Emily. Mary's character was written and acted to absolute perfection. I don't know who won the Emmy award for support throughout those years, but I know who should have.
The set dressings were so beautifully done, so well appointed and convincing, you almost feel like you're in a proper Virginia estate, which also conveniently happens to be a hooch factory. Hokey smokes, how I would have loved to plant my butt on the settee in their parlor and sample some of the recipe on a chilly October evening (as swirls of golden leaves tumble down, don't you know) and just delight in the Baldwin ladies' antique lives. Simply charming. I love every episode ever made with those two old gals.
Remember when Miss Mamie gets stuck behind the wall? I grin ear to ear every time I see that one. "Mamie, what are you doing in the wall?"...classic.
Post by Alexis From Texas on Feb 10, 2014 22:54:09 GMT -5
That was so lovely!
Poor Emily, the way she pined after Ashley Longworth near broke your heart. Even if you could recite her lines on how they met by memory. I love that episode where they find her ring in the old tree.
I love the website find a grave, and while going through there last night I noticed that very little info was on each entry for an actor on the Waltons or the actual Hamner family. Maybe one of these days I can add some information to them. Or some one else can.
I contribute to the Find A Grave website as well. Anyone can send a message to the person who created the memorial (asking them to add some information) -And I agree, there should be more information added to them. Unless the memorial was created by you, you cannot add copy to it. You can, however, add photos to them.
Last Edit: Feb 11, 2014 5:17:21 GMT -5 by Deleted - Back to Top